The tangy twist

Pork meat­balls with caramelised cab­bage

The Guardian - Feast - - Yotam Ottolenghi -

Prep 12 min

Cook 40 min

Serves 4

400g pork mince 70g fresh bread­crumbs (from 2 slices white crust­less bread)

2 gar­lic cloves, peeled and crushed 2

tbsp fresh thyme leaves

15g pars­ley, roughly chopped

2 tsp lemon zest

(ie, from 2 lemons)

½ tsp ground cin­na­mon

1 tsp car­away seeds

½ tsp chilli flakes Salt and black pep­per

1 tbsp veg­etable oil 40g un­salted but­ter 1 cab­bage, cut in half and then into 5mm-thick strips

2 tsp dark brown soft su­gar 300ml veg­etable stock

250g soured cream, to serve

This works very well just as it is, but serve with mashed potato if you want an even heartier meal.

In a large bowl, com­bine the mince, bread­crumbs, gar­lic, a ta­ble­spoon of thyme, a third of the pars­ley, a tea­spoon of lemon zest, all the spices, a half-tea­spoon of salt and a grind or two of pep­per. Form the mix into roughly 20 wal­nut-sized balls, each weigh­ing about 25g.

Heat the oil in a large saute pan on a high flame, then fry the meat­balls (in batches, if need be) for about three min­utes, turn­ing them so they go golden brown all over, then trans­fer to a plate.

Re­turn the pan to a high heat – don’t worry about wip­ing it clean – and add the but­ter. Once it siz­zles, add the cab­bage and fry for 10-12 min­utes, stir­ring oc­ca­sion­ally, un­til caramelised and dark golden brown.

Stir in the su­gar, the re­main­ing ta­ble­spoon of thyme and a tea­spoon of salt, then pour in the stock. Re­turn the meat­balls to the pan, turn down the heat to medium-low, cover and leave to sim­mer for eight min­utes. Re­move the lid, re­turn the heat to high, and cook for four to five min­utes more, un­til the liq­uid re­duces to about 150ml.

Di­vide the cab­bage and meat­balls be­tween four bowls. Mix the re­main­ing 10g pars­ley with a tea­spoon of lemon zest, and sprin­kle on top. Serve with a gen­er­ous dol­lop of soured cream.

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